Walking In Your Teen’s Shoes: Parenting Tips

What would it be like to walk in the shoes of a teen struggling with substance abuse?

Communicating with teenagers can mean walking a tightrope on a daily basis.  Difficult subjects such as substance abuse make those conversations even more difficult.

An art exhibit on display at the Milwaukee Public Museum hopes to spark meaningful conversations between parents and teens Photo 2by providing a look into the pressures and realities of teen life.  The exhibit “In My Shoes” was created by teen patients at Rosecrance’s adolescent campus in Rockford, the exhibit displays shoes that have been painted and decorated by teens to tell their story about substance use and serves as a starting point for discussion about taking the important steps to prevent substance use.

Rosecrance, a leading national provider of substance abuse treatment for teens in Rockford, IL, launched “In My Shoes,” to help parents understand teenagers’ points of view about the pressures they face and how they are confronted with the potential to use and abuse substances.

“This artwork display will inspire parents to do all they can to support and help prevent any level of substance use among their teens,” said Dr. Thomas Wright, Rosecrance’s Chief Medical Officer.  “Teens want their parents to actively parent and give them guidance, especially in today’s changing social environment.”

The “In My Shoes” exhibit will open to the public on April 1, 2015, at the Central Library at 814 W. Wisconsin Ave., where it will be on display in the Schoenleber Reading Room until April 26. The exhibit’s April stop coincides with the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence’s Alcohol Awareness Month, whose 2015 theme is “Early Education on Alcoholism and Addiction.”

Learn more about the exhibit at www.rosecrance.org/inmyshoes/

Helpful Resources:

Click here for a Resource for talking to teens about marijuana

Find out more about Rosecrance www.rosecrance.org

Eliz is pleased to partner with Rosecrance to promote this exhibit and has been compensated for this post.  All opinions are her own.

Eliz Greene is a freelance writer, blogger, and spokesperson.  She is a popular wellness speaker and virtual event host.  Find out more at www.elizgreene.com

Time To BE

Stop Doing and Just BE…

Life is so busy, full noise and things to do. How long has it been since you had time when you didn’t have to DO anything… time to just BE?

One of the reasons I love to sail is that it is the opportunity to just BE.  Sure, there are lines to pull, sails to trim, and a boat to steer, but most of the time, none of it is taxing… it’s relaxing.

No matter how you choose to do it, finding ways to unplug from the demands of work and home and just be is rejuvenating.

Think about it.silhouette of a woman

What would it feel like to step away from the computer, turn off the phone, silence the demands, tuck the to-do list away and just enjoy the quiet? How much more calm, focused, and healthy would you feel when you return?

It is time to just BE.

Tomorrow I’m off to BE on a sailboat, somewhere warm.  I’ll be back in 10 days, ready to take on the world!

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Eliz Greene is a motivational wellness speaker and a hybrid event emcee.  Her charisma and enthusiasm bridges the gap between live and virtual participants. Her humor and personal stories of recovering from a massive heart attack while seven-months pregnant with twins illustrate simple strategies participants can fit into an already busy day. Learn more at www.elizgreene.com or download a copy of her ebook: Leverage Your Speaker To Fill The Seats

15 Tips For A Healthy Meeting Or Convention

Stay focused and energized with tips for a healthy and productive meeting, conference, or convention.

A multiple day conference can undo the good work of healthy habits. Four hours of sitting increases triglyceride levels, raises blood pressure, deters blood flow, and slows thinking. Taking steps to protect your health as a participant is important. As a presenter, using movement within the program can support audience engagement, learning, and health. Event organizers can design programs to support healthy habits and encourage participation and learning.dancing-office-people

Healthy Meeting Tips for Participants

  • Stalk The Halls: Three 10-minute walks during the day can be as beneficial as a 30-minute walk. Walk from your room to the meeting area – and take a victory lap. Better yet, take the stairs for even more benefit.
  • Go A Little Nutty: A handful of heart healthy nuts such as almonds or walnuts is a great way to add omega-3 fatty acids to your diet, get a little protein, and stave off hunger. They are also high in fiber which aids in clearing cholesterol from your body (a good thing if there is some naughty eating).
  • Drink (Water That Is): At each session, grab a glass of water. Staying hydrated will help prevent the afternoon headache and aid digestion. Start your day with a big glass of water before your morning coffee. In the evening, alternate water with more adult beverages to keep your wits about you and prevent a hangover.
  • Sleep: Yes, this is a tough one! Try to get at least 6 hours of sleep each night. On average adults need 7 to 8 hours per night. Getting at least 6 hours of sleep will limit the sleep deficit you create and allow you to stay alert. A quick nap works wonders too!
  • Seek Out The Positive: Spend time with people who support you and your goals. Find someone to act as your accountability partner to help sort through all of the information and settle on action steps so you aren’t overwhelmed. Stop. Breathe. Relax. You can’t implement every idea, neither can anyone else.

Healthy Meeting Tips for Presenters

  • Audience Participates Every 15 minutes: Spur learning and engagement by breaking up passive listening with interaction.
  • Get Them Up: Making your audience stand at least once per hour increases blood flow, and supports learning.
  • Change Their Focus: Participants tend to slump in their chairs and stay in one position. Simply asking them to turn to look at the back wall, or in some other way change focus and position will increase engagement and ease body tension.

Healthy Convention Tips for Event Professionals

  • Plan 10 minutes of activity for every 4 hours of seated time.
  • Play the Pedometer Game: Give prizes for daily steps.
  • Walk To Eat: Put some distance between meeting rooms and dining areas to encourage movement.
  • Standing Committee Meetings: don’t sit down!
  • Active Breakout Sessions: Schedule Zoomba, yoga, or other activity during day to provide processing time
  • Create Healthy Community Opportunities: Running groups, yoga, walking groups etc.
  • Utilize a Line Dance or Flash Mob: Cue movement time with a theme song.

Plan ahead for a healthy meeting!

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Eliz Greene is a motivational wellness speaker and a hybrid event emcee.  Her charisma and enthusiasm bridges the gap between live and virtual participants. Her humor and personal stories of recovering from a massive heart attack while seven-months pregnant with twins illustrate simple strategies participants can fit into an already busy day. Learn more at www.elizgreene.com or download a copy of her ebook: Leverage Your Speaker To Fill The Seats

Social Media And The Future Of Meetings

Social Media Has Changed Meetings Forever

nsa-panel-mainstageThis summer it was my honor to be part of a main-stage panel celebrating the 40th anniversary of the National Speakers Association.  The conversation turned to the future of the speaking profession and meetings industry.

The landscape of national meetings, association meetings, and corporate events is shifting and both groups (speakers and meeting professionals) must face new challenges.  Social media has changed the nature of meetings.  Speakers and meeting professionals must embrace technology and understand the needs of a new – more connected – audience. It is no longer acceptable to have a static website or be without a social media presence.

Here are some insights from the panel:

  • Audiences are no longer satisfied with just a “good” speaker. The content must be rich and relevant.  The speaker must have tangible deliverables in order to justify the expense of having a live event.  Speakers are challenged to go deeper, give more, and deliver on promises.  Meeting professionals are charged with creating experiences that have measurable events.
  • Audiences are no longer satisfied with just the platform performance.  Members want to connect before and after a program.  Social media played a huge role in creating buzz for the National Speakers Association Convention.  As members, we connected in Facebook groups, encouraged attendance, shared excitement, and even posted YouTube videos to entice registration for events.  Since the event the groups have been very active and have held the engagement level high.  Successful speakers will need to develop social media avenues to interact with audiences before they arrive and support learning after they leave. Meeting professionals, especially those charged with engaging association members need to leverage social media to connect with members year round.
  • Audience members have devices, and they are on, you have to learn what to do with them.  “Please turn off your phones,” is no longer an option.  Your audience is connected and online at all times.  Understanding people will be engaged with devices during a program requires a shift in thinking:
    • Just because someone is typing on their phone or device, it doesn’t mean they aren’t paying attention.  Maybe he is taking notes.  Maybe she is Tweeting out the profound thing you just said.  It isn’t reasonable to expect all eyes on the speaker anymore.
    • Speakers need to adjust expectations and design programs to be easily shared. Make main points and phrases Tweet-able.  Encourage people to take a picture of your slide, or of you, and post it on Instagram or Facebook.  Use texts to survey the audience or field questions.
    • See the device as a way to connect rather than a barrier.
  • Audience and association members in the X and Y generations demand a higher level of involvement in meetings.  The “expert at the front of the room” model is less appealing to younger members who want to be part of the conversation.  Learning Lounges and TED-style (15 minute information packed) programs are popular.  Speakers must learn to adapt to shorter programs while maintaining impact. Meeting professionals must be flexible in providing meaningful ways to connect and exchange information in more customized and individual methods.
  • Audiences exist outside the physical meeting.  Incorporating virtual presentation, live streaming, and social media simulcasting of events may be the wave of the future.  This will require flexibility from the speaker and a good deal of infrastructure and planning on behalf of meeting professionals.  Simply supplying enough bandwidth for a conference can be challenging.  Future hybrid meetings, combining live and virtual sessions will require host venues to be flexible as well.

One additional lesson from the NSA Convention was the benefit of promoting the event on social media.  This year was one of the most well-attended in years and drew many new members.

The landscape of meetings is shifting.  Speakers and Meeting Professionals need to work together to build a bright future for the industry.

Eliz Greene is a motivational wellness speaker and a hybrid event emcee.  Her charisma and enthusiasm bridges the gap between live and virtual participants. Her humor and personal stories of recovering from a massive heart attack while seven-months pregnant with twins illustrate simple strategies participants can fit into an already busy day. Learn more at www.elizgreene.com or download a copy of her ebook: Leverage Your Speaker To Fill The Seats

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